Business Person of the Month: Kelli Palmer of Breedlove Beauty

Breedlove Beauty Co.

Kelli Palmer of Breedlove Beauty

Website: https://breedlovebeautyco.com/

Instagram: @breedlovebeautyco

When Kelli Palmer started Breedlove Beauty in 2016, she had a very specific goal in mind: to create a Black-owned line of luxury hair care and skin care products made with natural, organic ingredients. Palmer’s vision for her company also included stylish packaging and sleek branding and marketing. Fortunately, her experience working in Communications and Public Relations at LSU gave her an advantage in this area. As a Black woman with natural 4c textured hair, Palmer had a lot of experience making her own products using ingredients like shea and mango butters. Soon her friends and family started requesting that she make products for them and Palmer saw the opportunity to scratch the entrepreneurial itch that had always been there: “I’ve always had the desire to be a business owner. I knew I wasn’t going to work in the corporate world forever.” Palmer’s desire to be a business owner was so strong that she resigned from her position at LSU in April 2016 even before starting the business. She devoted the next few months to getting her business off the ground, and Breedlove Beauty officially launched on July 1st.

No photo description available.Speaking about the benefits of being a business owner, Palmer says that the best part is “the freedom and the ability to create and sell these wonderful products, make a living for myself, and have financial freedom.” She describes herself as a creative and loves the parts of the business that allow her to tap into her artistic side: “I love the marketing aspect, doing photo shoots and the creative content side of the business.” Radiating optimism and positivity, Palmer does not focus on the challenges of running a business, but she acknowledges that finding employees has been difficult and that COVID has caused shipping delays particularly on orders for packaging supplies.

When offering advice to new and aspiring entrepreneurs, Palmer is equal parts pragmatic and inspirational. She emphasizes that “staying on top of finances is one of the most important things. Make sure you get a business account, have all the business money going into the business account and make sure to pay yourself.” She stresses that having a business account and keeping detailed records will help in the future for things like applying for a business loan or leasing a retail space. She also suggests hiring or at least consulting with an accountant, getting a payroll system if possible, and seeking out available resources like grants, small business competitions and the library’s Small Business department. Palmer’s unsolicited (but highly appreciated) library plug transitions into a discussion of her history with libraries. As a teen nerd (her words) growing up in North Baton Rouge, she recalls walking to the Scotlandville Branch Library often for ACT prep classes, to use the computer, to spend hours reading or just to get out of the house. For her, the library was a place of solitude. Today, as the mom of a toddler and an avid reader, Palmer still values the important role that the library serves in Baton Rouge.

Returning to her business advice, Palmer acknowledges that, ofNo photo description available. course, making money is a primary goal of starting a business, but she warns that, “it can’t be all about the money because there are good and bad days. Sometimes you will have all the money and sometimes you will have no money.” She encourages folks to remember that, “if this is what you’re really passionate about you can do it. If you see God doing it for others, it can happen for you too. You just have to put in the work, energy and effort that it takes to get to that point. It may take longer for you than it does for other people, but if you stay focused it’s going to happen.”

Before the interview concluded, Palmer revealed the origins of her company’s name: Breedlove Beauty. It has a dual meaning referring to her desire to “breed love into the world” with her products while also paying homage to Sarah Breedlove (the Black entrepreneur credited as America’s female first self-made millionaire) who is better known as Madam C.J. Walker.

Check out Breedlove Beauty at https://breedlovebeautyco.com/ or on Instagram @breedlovebeautyco.

21st Century Business Forum: Drew Brees

The Greater Baton Rouge Business Report presents the 21st Century Business Forum, a monthly series featuring America’s top business minds and thought leaders, sponsored by the East Baton Rouge Parish Library and Home Bank.

Former champion quarterback Drew Brees—now a studio analyst for NBC Sports and prolific businessman and investor—shares his insights about leadership and success in this episode of 21st Century Business Forum.
During his athletic career, he amassed an unprecedented collection of records, milestones and accolades—both on and off the field—during a 20-year NFL career as quarterback with the New Orleans Saints and San Diego Chargers. He led the Saints to victory in Super Bowl XLIV and was named the game’s MVP.
Today, he’s a successful entrepreneur: He’s co-owner of Surge Adventure Parks with 15 locations, and franchise investments in Dunkin’, Jimmy John’s, Walk Ons Bistreaux & Bar, Happy’s Irish Pub and Stretch Zone, among others. He also serves on the boardsof b1BANK and the equity firm Franworth, and is a global brand ambassador for PointsBet.
The Brees Dream Foundation has contributed more than $45 million to help improve the quality of life for cancer patients and provide care, education and opportunities for children and families in need. In 2006, Brees won the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award, one of the league’s highest honors that recognizes a player for his excellence on and off the field.
To register for this FREE virtual event, visit businessforumusa.com/batonrouge

If you’re a current or aspiring entrepreneur, we know you’ll benefit from the Library’s FREE resources for businesses including Gale Entrepreneurship articles, Newsbank, EBSCO, Sage Researcher and more! Visit the Digital Library at ebrpl.com/DigitalLibrary to explore.

Garden Discoveries: Landscape Design

Have you ever wondered why some gardens outshine others? Could it be their landscape design? The Baton Rouge Botanic Garden Foundation will host a FREE Garden Discoveries presentation on Saturday, January 8 at 10:00 a.m. at the Main Library at Goodwood led by Buck Abbey a Landscape Architect and retired professor of the LSU School of Landscape Architecture. Abbey will demonstrate in real time how quality landscape design emerges through the art of drawing. He will incorporate principles of design along with art elements of line, texture, color and form. The audience will be able to watch and see what arises from site analysis through concept development to a final plan.

Red Stick Revelry

BankPlus presents Red Stick Revelry, Baton Rouge’s official New Year’s Eve celebration, partnering with the River Center Branch Library for its noon celebration for kids – Red Stick Rising. For the ninth year, a 9-foot tall LEDlighted Red Stick will rise into place 60 feet above the North Boulevard Town Square where it will sit until it descends in the countdown to midnight to ring in the New Year. Starting at 11 a.m. on New Year’s Eve, the River Center Branch Library will host storytelling, arts activities, and a special performance by Clay Achee, creator of Ziggy and the Junkyard Band and the new LPB show “Ziggy’s Arts Adventure.” Clay will perform songs with his puppets and talk with the kids about puppeteering. At noon, everyone is invited out to the Town Square to sing “Auld Lang Syne” as the Red Stick rises.

Red Stick Rising was created to give kids their own special New Year’s Eve tradition. Later that evening, entertainment kicks off in Davis Rhorer Plaza, adjacent to the River Center Branch, at 8:00 p.m. with live music by Press 1 for English and The Michael Foster Project, two all-new laser light shows and fireworks over the Mississippi River when the Red Stick drops at midnight.

Along with presenting sponsor BankPlus, both events are made possible by Visit Baton Rouge, the Office of Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome, the EBR Library, the Greater Baton Rouge Arts Council, Downtown Development District and others. All events are free and the public is invited.

Two More Weeks on Food for Fines

Do you have library fines? Now is the time to knock them out because Food for Fines is back for the month of December! We will waive $1.00 of late fines for each non-perishable food item you donate. You can drop off your donation at the circulation desk at any of our 14 libraries. No fines? You can still donate too! All of the food collected goes to the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank. Last year we collected 8,305 pounds of food! Let’s try to surpass that amount this year! Drop off your food donations today! For more information, call (225) 231-3740.